Sequels That Just Can’t Get Going

By Colin Greten

JJ Abrams’ “Star Trek” brought the long running franchise into the 21st century, capturing massive audiences and creating a whole new generation of Trekkies. The film was such a huge success that sequel rumors began to swirl as the credits started to roll.

Today, audiences finally have something tangible to salivate at in the form of the new “Star Trek Into Darkness” teaser trailer. The trailer is awesome, but what it represents is what is really exciting. It means that this movie is actually being made. While there are so many sequels and remakes being made in Hollywood these days, there are plenty of sequels that audiences have longed for years that fall by the wayside for any number of reasons.

There is a sequel to “The Collector”, a gore-filled horror film that grossed a mere $7 million, but no sequel to “The Italian Job” a movie that grossed nearly 200 million. Did “Jaws” really need one sequel let alone three? Norman Bates is on the fast track to the insane asylum at the end of “Psycho”, does his story need to be continued to the point of “Psycho IV: The Beginning?” And with all that a “Roger Rabbit” sequel can’t be put together?

These pleas might be in-vain as the film industry continually looks for new sequels and remakes and might get around to making some of these but here are a few sequels that should have been made:

“Zombieland 2″
“Zombieland” had perfect timing. It paired two young actors (Jesse Eisenberg and Emma Stone) who were literally about to become headlining stars. It came when audiences were looking for a fresh take on a tired zombie genre. Combine that with veteran badass Woody Harrelson and an ingenious cameo from Bill Murray, and you’ve got an instant classic. The film is able to find a great balance between all the terror, dark comedy and lack of Twinkies that come with the zombie apocalypse. All the main characters survive, and the film was extremely successful, a sequel is a no-brainer right? While there have been plenty of rumors, “Zombieland 2″ has failed to become anything more than just that: a rumor. It might be too late as Emma Stone, Jesse Eisenberg and director Ruben Fleischer (Gangster Squad) have seemingly moved onto more serious projects, but we can hope.

“The Brazilian Job” aka “The Italian Job Part II”
“The Italian Job,” a remake of a 1969 Michael Caine film, was a surprising success. While it had little to do with the original film, the wide range of actors and their combined chemistry really carry the film. Mark Wahlberg, Charlize Theron (right before she became an Oscar winner), Jason Statham, Seth Green, Mos Def and Edward Norton have all become established personalities in Hollywood since the film premiered (with Wahlberg and Norton already having that status beforehand). A sequel called “The Brazilian Job” was announced soon after the 2003 film, and why not? Who wouldn’t want to see Wahlberg and his crew pull off another thrilling heist? The issue is that this project has been “in development” for too long without any progress. “The Italian Job” is now nearly a decade old film (man, I feel old saying that) meaning that the studio may have missed their window for a sequel completely.

“Wanted 2″
While “Wanted” was a “loved it” or “hated it” type of movie, its gross alone is enough to warrant a sequel. The film had some great action sequences and made over $340 million worldwide. Why would you not want a sequel? While many of the main characters in the original are dead, the comic book source material is filled with an abundant amount of storylines. Director Timur Bekmambetov is fresh off a disappointing “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” so perhaps he will be willing to go back to the proverbial well and do “Wanted 2,” but until then it’s just speculation.